Have you been defrauded by British Gas?

Falsified Fixed Prices Agreement.

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1. Falsified Fixed Prices Agreement.

This fraud started with an undated letter that I received in March 2005. As I said earlier I had neither requested nor signed up for any fixed price gas and electricity prices deal. As prices had risen just before this letter I thought that it was unlikely that there would be another rise in the near future, therefore there was no point in paying the higher unit energy prices under such a deal. I was also angry that British Gas claimed that I had signed up for such a deal when I had not. To make sure there was no misunderstanding about this I rang British Gas, in reply to this letter, on 24 March 2005 emphatically telling them that I had not signed up to fix my gas and electricity prices and that I did not want a fixed prices agreement.



Correspondence with British Gas
Most, but not all, of the correspondence between British Gas and me is shown in full in a 5MB pdf file, by clicking here you can open it in a separate window and cross-check every thing I claim.

When you read these documents bear in mind that on 31st August 2006 British Gas eventually admitted,
"With regard to the Price Protection packages . . . , you did not sign or register for this agreement".
This means that at the same time as B.G. were being evasive, lying and making threats of court actions and debt collectors they knew all along that there never had been any agreement.



So let's go through the statements made by British Gas about my having a fixed energy prices agreement with them.

M J Clare(?), Managing Director, wrote to me in an undated letter in March 2005.
"Dear Mr Loud
Recently, you signed up to fix your gas and electricity prices with British Gas."

- No I hadn't signed up for anything!
I wonder, is this guy the baddie who started off these falsified agreements?


Will Napier, Customer Relations, wrote to me in an letter dated 30 May 2006.
"Regarding the charges for capped price energy, there is a note on your account dated 21 February 2005 which stated that there was a pre-registered application for capped prices until 2007."
- I hadn't pre-registered for anything. There might have been a note, but I'd had nothing to do with it's creation.


Barrie Caird, Senior Customer Liaison Manager, emailed to me on 4th June 2006.
"With regard to the monies you were charged for the cancellation of a contract, I am sorry that you think we have falsified a contract with you, however can confirm that we have all necessary paperwork relating to the contract which you agreed with us around 21 February 2005."
- I can confidently call this guy a li**. I had not agreed to any such contract so he could not possibly have all the neccessary paperwork.
I repeatedly asked him to send me a copy of this paperwork. I got a load of bullsh** about Data Protection and was sent a form telling me I'd have to pay £10 to British Gas to get a copy of the agreement.


After I contacted Ofgem, who contacted Energywatch, who contacted British Gas
Will Napier, Customer Relations, wrote to me in an letter dated 14th July 2006.
"I also understand that you have requested further information regarding the notes on your account that refer to this price protection agreement. These notes were system generated and were intended for the general information of any individual who was required to perform maintenance on your account. Please find below the full content of the notes:

Fixed Price Gas - Customer has pre-registered for this offer which
fixes prices until 1st April 2007. The customer needs to take no
further action at present. Both the customer and customer contact
will be updated as to when the offer will commence. Check notes on
customer's electricity account to see if customer has also pre-
registered for Fixed Price Electricity.

Fixed Price Electricity - Customer has pre-registered for this offer,
which fixes prices until 1st April 2007. The customer needs to take no
further action at present. Both the customer and customer contact
will be updated as to when the offer will commence. Check notes on
customer's gas account to see if customer has also pre-
registered for Fixed Price Gas.


These notes were both placed on the respective accounts on 21 February 2005. In the e-mail you received form my colleague Barrie Caird, these notes were paperwork to which he referred, as these are taken as confirmation that the offer has been agreed to."

- Ahh, Good Old Will Napier, a wily guy but not a liar.
So Will seems to be saying that the note that claimed that I had an agreement with British Gas was a note British Gas generated on their own computer for their own use. By implication this must mean that it was generated without any request, signature or agreement from me. Which means there was no agreement between me and British Gas for fixed prices energy. So what was that rubbish from Bulls*** Barrie.


Now let's see how this agreement is explained, in a
letter dated 2nd August 2006 from Patricia Rant, British Gas Customer Relations.
Unfortunately when Barry Caird originally investigated your account he relied on the information stored in the notes on your account. Regarding the Price protection 2007 requests, which would have been received either from our internet site - house.co.uk or our internal electronic form system, Will's letter dated 14 July 2006 states that the 'paperwork' referred to by Barrie Caird is "electronic notes and could have been transposed onto you recount in error". I am therefore unable to send out hard copies of this information as requested.

Will also advised that these notes are taken as confirmation that there is an agreement between us. I can also see that this tariff was added to your electricity account on 21 March 2005 and on your gas account on 26 March 2005. . . .



. . . and in another letter dated 18 Aug. 2006 from Patricia Rant, British Gas Customer Relations.
"Therefore even though you did not actually physically sign for this product an agreement existed electronically."
and
"I will recall both accounts from the debt collection team, . . . "
Aghhh! Just as I thought it was accepted that I was not party to any agreement then this letter states, "an agreement existed electronically." No, an agreement did not exist. What existed was a document created by British Gas, which falsely said that an agreement existed.


Eventually the truth about this agreement :-)
On 31st August 2006 I received a letter from Patricia Rant who stated,
"With regard to the Price Protection packages as I advised you in my letter dated 18 August 2006, you did not sign or register for this agreement"



So there we have it.
When M J Clare(?), Managing Director, wrote to me in his undated letter in March 2005,
"Recently, you signed up to fix your gas and electricity prices with British Gas."
what he meant was that British Gas had their computer create a note saying that I had signed up for fixed prices when I hadn't signed up for anything at all, so his statement was not true.
Does that make him a liar, or does it not? :-)

Barrie Caird, Senior Customer Liaison Manager, emailed to me on 4th June 2006.
". . we have all necessary paperwork relating to the contract which you agreed with us around 21 February 2005."
Does that make him a liar, or does it not? :-)

On the basis of that falsified, non-existant, agreement British Gas subsequently charged me premium rates for enegry supplies, and tried to charge me a £20 and a £30 fee for cancelling an agreement between us which never existed.
Is that fraud or is it not?

If they tried to rip-off me with such a scam I presume they tried the same scam with many many other customers. Could it be that they tried it on all 17 million, or whatever it was before the customers left in droves, or was it just a few hundred thousand.
Were you defrauded? Was this Britain's biggest corporate fraud?




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